Posts from June 2003
I certainly would not have wanted to be the person to write the main song for the Charlie’s Angels sequel. How do you even get close to both the outstanding brilliance of Independent Woman Part 1 or indeed how do you dovetail the fun of the song with the fun of the film so well. One technique is of course not even bothering. Which is the route used by Pink (surely now she has nary a lick of pink in her barnet she should relinquish the name). Firstly Pink, grumpy bird that she is now should not have been let anywhere near this franchise. The name would suggest that a track from the Legally Blonde sequel would have made more sense. But instead we get Pink not only doing the song, but in the film in a cameo role.
One of the nice things about Independent Woman (Part 1) was how the song references the film without being out and out Ghostbusters. The beautiful role call opening linked the two pieces of work – and the Angels were ultimately confident Independent Women. If Feel Good Time has a similar kind of synergy it suggest that Barrymore, Diaz and Liu will just be going through the motions. There is not a spark of fun in the song at all. Which bodes badly for the film – which in itself the original was one of the best pop music using films in years. Pink has taken the pop out of Charlie’s Angels.
(An aside, whilst being equally gritty, Christina Aguiliera’s “Fighter” would have been a perfect song for the film. And she’s even got the chaps for dirt bike racing. Cos Charlie’s Angels are Fighters. Of course if anyone had released a song called “Fetish Gear Dressing Up Box” that would have won the gig hands down.)
Posted edited 1/07/03 to get the name of the song right. Though frankly as she sings Real, Good Time all the way through the song it would be useful to your half cockjed reviewer if she called it that. I’m asking you – who does this make look stupid – me or Pink?
DJ FORMAT – The Hit Song
In which yet another one of those incessant stream of turntablists hooks up with a lousy no mark MC to make a hip-hop record. DJ Format is a UK turntablist, for which read someone who wants to be in hip-hop but realised a long time ago that there are no decent rappers in Brighton – let alone the UK. So of course he went alone with his wicky-wicky noises and roped in the best solo rap artists he could find.
He really shouldn’t have started looking in Canada.
Abdominal, who raps on The Hit Song, fits his name only in as much as he raps just about as well as Abs from Five would. But that’s okay, since this is an “intelligent” rap record. We can tell this by using the Tanya Headon patented undie rap intelligence test:
a) There is no swearing
b) The subject matter is either needlessly obscure or utterly irrelevant
c) Simple concepts are laboured over in an effort to prove how clever it is
d) It goes on far too long
e) It is crap.
The Hit Song hits (apologies) all of these criteria with bags of self referentiality to spare. Y’see the point of the Hit Song – as belaboured over in the chorus – is that DJ Format rings up his mate Abdominal because they need to record a hit record. Possibly also because he has no mates in the UK. Why he has chosen a lousy rapper like Abdominal to make this hit record with it is unclear, he certainly doesn’t display any skills which would make this look like a probably outcome. Rather than a song about how bling he is, or how he shags loads of girls, or even how badass he is – Abdominal decides to take another tack. He combines the favourite topic of US comedians playing in the UK (what happened on their flight over) with a linguistic examination of what exactly the word hit means.
He picks up the meaning which a boxer would be most acquainted with, he is even au fait with the Mafia meaning. Nowhere in his illustration of meaning, metaphors and examples does he ever grasp what it is to have an actual HIT RECORD. You know, good lyrics and a tune. Instead he says the word hit so many times the it ends up having as little meaning to the listener as it obviously does to DJ Format.
(This piece was brought to you by the word HIT: which has occurred 10 times – one for each of the belts in the chops that DJ Format is going to get when I see him next.)
Liz Phair-Hot White Cum (HWC)
It sounds like an 80s sit com, and the lyrics aren’t nearly as dirty or poignant as they used to be. I expected some small punk novelty, like Avril gone porno, it is the safest of the safe, and that counts all of the last two albums, where she tried to sell out and no one was buying.
RUFFUS – “Eighties Comin’ Back”
Letter perfect Steely-Dan-in-chart-po(m)p-mode, made all the more outrageously decadent and out of place this year by the indescipherable (English) lyrics which remain opaque even after a dozen listens. Estonia’s 2003 Eurovision entry and it sounds like it: they don’t make ’em like this anymore, because they never really made ’em like this in the first place. And another great single this year that reminds me worryingly of David Gray. (And another from Tom, the year’s most consistent selector.)
Here is a poll by which you can help me choose which tracks to play at Wednesday night’s FREAKY TRIGGER CLUB NIGHT (see front page for details). Vote for any you would like to hear, if you’re coming, and any you’d like to inflict on others, if you aren’t. The top choice will definitely be played, the next few might.
NOT POP-EYE 22/6/03
Evanescence are still number one. What does this mean? Well first of all it means that lovers of novelty singles will be disappointed. The Fast Food Rockers (its a bit of fun, we’re actually pro-healthy eating) and their garish outfits don’t get to tell their grandchildren that they were number one in a somewhat embaressed way in forty years time. If you were in the Wombles do you crow about your number one? You’ll certainly never forget.
The other key thing about Evanescence being number one is that this year has remarkably slow on turnaround for number ones. We’ve only had nine number ones this year, and we are almost halfway there, and there is no strong competition to knock the moody goth rockers of the top. Which is no great shakes – plenty of people have tried to make the rock-rap-chick crossover work, but Back To Life is the only time it has really come good. I’ve still got good money on them being one hit wonders (or at least to have a pretty lacklustre follow-up), but oddly its a song I don’t tire of hearing. Yet.
Blink 182-Adams Song
Punk hates itself as much as it hates the world, the adolescent anger that fuels it becomes self loathing with very little provocation. Suicide is not unknown, and other behaviors that are so self destructive that they become de facto suicide are common. Pop Punk, the watered down, kids all aright fun younger brother of “real” punk does not have the same issues though. Which makes this song bizarre–moving away from the puerile shit jokes and the adolescent sex gags, it is a painful document of teenage depression. It speaks the voice of punk musically, but also in the sheer documentary power of the images. The idea of giving property up, rooms sealed up like morgues, apple juice spilled in the hall. All of the details strike me as not only true but accurate. It is not angry, but sad-and this sadness cannot be recovered.
SIOBAHN O’DONAGHY – Overrated
Calling your first single overrated is inviting the critic to give you a good kicking. Unless of course no-one rates at all. The odd thing about this song from the Sugababe wot left (was pushed, girls can be so cruel, etc etc) is that it is actually relatively difficult to rate in the first place. It has the dubious honour of being an almost perfectly anonymous Radio One playlist kind of song that you enjoy while it plays, and then you completely forget. Until you hear it again when you remember you quite liked it. And then it goes again. Perfect for playlist longevity as no-one is going to get annoyed by it – except maybe Keisha and Mutya. Coupled with an equally anonymous ad campaign Siobahn is going for that hardest of roles in UK pop – the respected pop musician. Next step Glastonbury.
I was going to tell you what it sounded like, but it just went of the radio and I’ve just lost my train of though. Unrated then.
Hmm, the clue to his drugs habit was in his name wasn’t it?
TOM’S TOP TWELVE
TATU – “Ne Ver’ Ne Bojsia”
TES – “New New York”
PET SHOP BOYS – “Try It (I’m In Love With A Married Man)”
LB – “Jealous Guy”
CAPLETON – “Who Dem Ah Work With”
MR RING-DING – “Bombs Over Baghdad”
VITALIC – “You Prefer Cocaine”
COLDPLAY – “Clocks (Frenchbloke & Sonof Remix)”
HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT – “Floreat Inertia”
LACQUER – “Behind”
LUMIDEE – “Never Leave You”
VITAMIN C – “Last Nite”